Instant Pot French Onion Soup

This is probably the best French Onion Soup you’ll ever have.  It’s better than any restaurant, that’s for sure and it has that PERFECT balance of savory and sweet!

AND it’s going to save you a TON of time by making it in your Instant Pot.

You’ll also want to get onion soup crocks which are a must to make this done the right way!

I should also note that in the video, I doubled the recipe which is perfect for freezing for use on another day! After making 2 crocks worth, I still had 3 quarts of soup left!Here’s How I Made It!:

We’ll start up by chopping a BUNCH of various types of onions.  Grab tissues.  You’ll cry more than you did at the end of Beaches.

Then we’ll add some butter to the Instant Pot…

…along with some vegetable oil.

Melt the butter and mix with the oil until bubbly…

…and then add in our onions!  Toss them up with the oil and butter real nicely…

…and add in some brown sugar.

After about 10-15 minutes of setting and stirring, the onions will become slightly caramelized and softened.

So we’ll want to add in some beef broth…

…and a dry red wine.

And then spice it up with some bay leaves…

…dried thyme…

…garlic powder…


…and pepper.

Stir well, secure the lid and cook on high pressure.

Once quick released, discard the bay leaves and let’s assemble our soup!

Take a ladle, scoop up some of that incredible soup…

…and lade it into french onion soup crocks!

Top with some croutons (SO much easier than toasted bread!)…

…seal with some sliced provolone cheese…

…(use 2 slices if the rim of your crock is really wide!)…

…and a slice of swiss cheese resting on top of the provolone.

Sprinkle on some paprika…

…place the crocks on a foil-lined baking sheet…

…broil in the oven for a few minutes until the cheese begins to bubble and brown…

…and enjoy some of the greatest french onion soup of your life!

Instant Pot French Onion Soup
Yield: 6

Instant Pot French Onion Soup

Instant Pot French Onion Soup

Welcome to the greatest, cheesiest, most comforting French Onion Soup in the world. A bold statement? Sure. But definitely not a crock 😉

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 28 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes


  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) salted butter (updated from the video to remove the oil and just stick with butter)
  • 4 big onions (I used 1 of each: Vidalia/Sweet, Red, Yellow and Spanish)
  • 3 teaspoons light brown sugar
  • 4 cups beef broth (I used 4 cups of water mixed with 4 teaspoons of Beef Better Than Bouillon)
  • 1 cup dry red wine (I used Pinot Noir)
  • 1 teaspoon dry thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (not shown in the video but I do add this)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Croutons (you can buy a small bag of your flavor choice in any market or make your own)
  • Provolone and Swiss/Gruyere Slices
  • Shaved Asiago (optional)
  • Paprika, for presentation


  1. Cut the onions so they are halved and then slice into strips (don’t dice!) and set aside in a bowl.
  2. Put the Instant Pot on Sauté and melt the butter until it sizzles.
  3. Add the onions and brown sugar and stir regularly for about 10-15 minutes or until the onions have cooked down by about half and have become translucent and have a pasta-like consistency. Make sure they aren’t too firm or too mushy!
  4. Add the broth, red wine, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, garlic powder, salt, pepper and bay leaves. Give it a stir and secure the lid. Hit “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” for 8 minutes. Quick release when done.
  5. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Preheat your oven to broil while quick releasing. Taste the soup (but be careful – It’ll be hot!) and feel free to add additional seasoned salt and pepper as you see fit. But I think it’s perfect as is!
  6. Ladle the soup into the crocks until it’s just below the brim. Layer the croutons on top of the soup so that it serves as a foundation for the cheese. Seal with 1-2 slices of Provolone (depending on how wide your crock is. Mine needs 2 to cover it properly but many will only need 1). And then layer a slice of Swiss or some shredded Gruyere (and a few flakes of the Asiago, if using). Leave some of the Swiss a little over the edges so when it bakes, it coats some of the side of the crock. Peeling the cheese off while eating is one of the best parts of the french onion soup experience! Sprinkle lightly with some paprika.
  7. Place the crock on a baking tray lined with tin foil and pop into the oven for 5 mins or until the top begins to bubble, turns slightly brown and forms a cheese-like crust.
  8. ENJOY!

Jeffrey's Tips

Have a lot of soup leftover?  GREAT!  You can freeze it and then thaw and use it as the sauce for my French Onion Chicken or for cooking my French Onion Risotto!

If you wish to make the best French Onion Soup you’ll ever have, you’re going to want to buy French Onion Soup Crocks to do it right!   These are going to come in VERY handle during the cheese broiling process and so I’ve listed two different types of crocks you can get. Both come in sets of 4 and are in that EXACT style you love.

Reader Interactions


  1. Ann M Banting

    Hi! I am wondering how much oil in French Onion Soup recipe as it does not include it on the ingredient list. I am looking forward to making this. 🙂

  2. Sophia

    Hi Jeffery, I just need some clarification here. Your recipe says oil and butter, yet you say you don’t use oil in this recipe. You also call for worcestershire sauce and garlic powder, which are in the directions, but don’t show up in the ingredients. How much of each is used? Thanks, appreciate your recipes, they are delish.

    • Jeffrey

      I updated to just have butter instead of oil after changing my mind and since updated the recipe but it always mention the Worcestershire and garlic powder in the recipe card. Enjoy!

  3. Angelika Bush

    I used 1/2 beef bone broth and 1/2 beef stock and the broth was to die for. Instead of the provolone I used Gruyere along with Swiss and I thought I died and went to heaven.

  4. Jeff

    Hello Jeffrey,
    I made this recipe but with all Vidalia onions. Seemed a little sweet to me. I should have used what you stated.
    Anyway, I also purchased some “essential items” that you recommended. (Soup crocs, as well as an instant-read thermometer).

  5. Jessica

    Really appreciate this recipe. However, not sure if it was the wine or what, but had too sweet of a taste. I added more beef broth and it was better. Again, thank you

    • Lynn Kennedy

      Our go to French onion soup. My 101 1/2 year old mom loves it. Followed your recipe to the t except for the wine. We had white wine instead of red. Used that, the flavor was great.

  6. Gail Bedard

    I make your recipe for French onion soup often. We love it. But today I used beef better than bouillon for the first time, and omg it was delicious. I will never use anything but that from now on.

    • Kat

      I usually make it with beef better than bouillon and it is delicious. I ended up having to use another product this time and the soup is just not as good, not even close.

  7. Gail

    YUMMY. A little on the salty side for me, but a simple adjustment can fix that. I took it one step further. I hit it with an immersion blender. Gave it a creamy texture and no onions, but suppose you can put some aside when blending.

    • Heidi

      Very good, but I think I’d reduce the amount of thyme next time… Probably cut it in half. I thought the flavor was too pronounced, I’d like it to be more subtle.

      • Patti

        I also thought thyme overpowered a bit…but wondering since it was listed under produce. .. should have been fresh thyme..which would not have been too much

    • Barbara

      Just my two cents, but I remember the great chef James Beard said it was ALWAYS a good thing to not use any kind of wine in your cooking that you wouldn’t drink. “Cooking wine” has way too much sodium and isn’t as great as a good wine would be.

  8. Evelyne

    Hi JE

    Any suggestions on how to make this vegetarian(beef broth sub) as I keep kosher & one of the best parts of FOS is the cheese !

  9. Ronald

    Very tasty. I doubles the recipe, 7 very large onions, I added less sugar only one tablespoon, I used 1/2 cup of port , 1/2 cup sherry and some shaoxing chinese cooking wine. 5 beef bouillon cubes to 8 cups water. Also used Maggi seasoning with Worscestershire sauce. (Add Maggi seasoning to your repertoire)
    I couldnt find my crocks so I put toast on baking sheet with grated cheese under the broiler till browned, then placed on the hot soup .
    Very fast and easy recipe with great results.

  10. Michelle Woods

    I made this last night and it was BombDiddyLicious 🤤😋🤤 Thank you Jeffrey for another delicious recipe!!!

  11. Karen E. McConnell

    I just made your French Onion Soup Recipe today & made homemade croutons to go on top of it. I love it. I can’t post a picture of it here, so I’ll post it on FB instead.

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